Twin brother dentists Kent and Brent Hansen were "babes in the woods" when they succumbed to a "provocative and exciting" patient and gave her drugs in return for sexual favors, a lawyer said Monday.
"No two people are so naive as these two when it comes to life's experiences," said Jackson Howard, an attorney for the Hansens, who face charges of unprofessional conduct.Howard's defense of the dentists came during opening statements of a scheduled weeklong hearing before the state Dentist and Dental Hygienists Board."
If found guilty of unprofessional conduct, the Hansens face revocation, suspension or other sanctions against their licenses to practice.
In August 1989, the State Division of Occupation and Professional Licensing issued a 47-page petition accusing the Hansens of sexual misconduct, substandard dental care and Medicaid fraud.
But Howard asked the board not to take the state's charges for granted. "Give us a chance to explain," Howard said.
He described the state's key witness as someone oversexed and "enamored with her good looks."
"She thought she would be the centerfold of Hustler Magazine," Howard said. "She described herself as the header queen of Juab County."
Howard acknowledged that Kent Hansen succumbed to "her womanly wiles," by engaging in oral sex, and Brent Hansen looked at nude photos of her out of "prurient interest."
"They admit to bad judgment," Howard said. "They should have thrown her out but didn't."
In contrast, Howard described his clients as "pillars in their communities," holding high civic and church positions. The Hansens have practices in Midvale and Span-ish Fork.
"It takes courage to face the ordeal they are facing today," Howard said.
He explained that the conduct with this one patient doesn't define their fitness to practice dentistry.
He said his clients can explain the charges of Medicaid fraud and substandard dental care.
"We have 107 charges of salacious conduct," Howard said. `When you get to the end of this hearing, we'll see how many are left."
Assistant state attorney general Robert Steed said, "When this is over, you'll be able to make a decision whether these two men should hold dental licenses in the state of Utah."